GARY NEVILLE ON A WINNING MENTALITY
Well I have spoken a lot about that and what it is, it isn't just about winning games, over the last few years and people are now cottoning on that mentality does play a party in Sport. Whether they understand it is the be all and end all is another matter.
Jan Vertonghen feels Mauricio Pochettino has installed a winning mentality at Tottenham Hotspur. #THFC
Mauricio Pochettino talks about it, Hugo Lloris talks about it, Mousa Dembele talks about it, Jan Vertonghen, Federico Fazio before him. Go back though a few years and nobody at Tottenham was talking about it, not even the coaches.
We have come a long way because we were always striving for something better than mediocrity from our coaches and after a lot of trying have found the Argentinian on whom we did more homework than on any other coach probably. We went greatly into depth before appointing him over Frank de Boer.
Gary Neville listed five qualities that make up a winning mindset at an event for Vauxhall, the England sponsor, in which he said a winning mentality is built up over time. You have to work at it was his first point. You have to surround yourself with people who take responsibility for themselves and their actions and who have the right attitude every day, not just game day.
Point two was about the environment. A manager has to create the right environment for players to develop in and that means a happy atmosphere. He sets the standards that encourage hard work and meticulous preparation. In that environment you'll bring out the best in your players, you certainly won't do so in an unhappy environment as demonstrated at Leicester City this season and Chelsea last season.
The next point is about belief. It is about having faith in your ability, in your manager, in your tactics and having the confidence to keep going. Not every game can be won so it is about maintaining a level, when you have conceded or scored. A few years ago we fell to pieces as soon as we let in a goal, we were panicking and vulnerable, now we handle that pressure better mentally. It is the same when we score, you can not get carried away, lose concentration and let the opposition equalise immediately.
His fourth point is having certain players who are the managers lieutenants. They set the standards of behaviour, how they act, how they train. You can see this with Hugo Lloris all the time, he isn't the most vocal but is a total professional who commands respect. They can help maintain a managers philosophy when he is not with the group, such as a social setting.
His final point to creating a winning mentality was to recruit players with the right traits, something I keep banging on about when I suggest the use of Sports Psychologists in the player identification and evaluation process. If you are surrounded by players who give everything every minute you have no choice but to do the same or you have to leave.
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